19 April, 2010

Writing Group

There's a new writing group starting up in a town near us and I am considering checking them out. Maybe. I don't have a good track record with such things - I'm just too self-conscious and would rather just be a silent fly-on-the-wall - but I need to do something, find something, to help me out of this awful slump. So, I don't know.

Does anyone have any experience with writing groups? How can someone like me slip in and be just 'the gal who brings cookies' instead of, well... the whole TSJ mess?


Krista Heiser said...

I've joined a few writing groups over the years. Some experiences have been better than others. Really, I think there are couple of key factors that make or break a group for me.

1. Chemistry. If I'm not comfortable with the group members, it's not easy to share my writing.

2. Respect. This is a biggie. Respect the author, critique the work. When the critique begins to feel like a personal attack (based on chemistry, most likely), there really isn't any incentive to keep coming back.

Tammy Jones said...

Thanks, Krista {{huggs}}

Jean said...

Krista's comment makes a lot of sense. I was thinking you might be able to skip telling them the TSJ and just introduce yourself as Tammy Jones with a few publications to your credit but you're looking for a local group to interact with.

But I'm not sure how well that would work. I'm not advocating lying but not diving in with all the information right off the bat, but the most important thing is for you to be you. Before you go, think about what you want or need from the group and see if they have any hope of being able to provide it. You, have a lot to offer, but you have to assess if the group is looking to hear what you have to offer. That's where the chemistry and respect comes into play.

Monica J King said...

I've come to the conclusion that I'm better online or alone.

Face 2 face is simply too fraught, and writing is fraught enough

Tammy Jones said...

Thanks Jean!

Monica, lots of {{{huggs}} hon. I know exactly what you mean.

Wendy said...

I'm with Jean; you don't have to tell them you're published until you know them better. If you do, though, you can help the ones who are good and trying to get published. Maybe you should consider what you can contribute as well as what you can get.